Pushing the limits

Lucasz Warzecha
Lucasz Warzecha

New Mills professional adventure sports photographer and film-maker Lucasz Warzecha is to speak at this weekend’s Sheffield Adventure Film Festival.

In addition to his talk about the life of a professional photographer, the 30-year-old, who hails from Poland, will also be showing two films as well as an exhibition of his photography. Here he answers a few questions:

Q: You’re Polish and you were living in London and Edinburgh. Why did you move to New Mills?

A: I wanted to be able to go running or mountain-biking from my doorstep. If wanted to do something outdoors living in London when I got back from an assignment I had to travel again and I was just tired of that whole set up.

Q: You only graduated five years ago, yet you’ve already made a name for yourself as one of the top adventure sports photographers in the business.

A: It’s been a proper journey for the past five years. I haven’t actually got a degree. I’ve only got a diploma and I look back at the projects we’ve been involved in it’s quite mind-blowing - it’s quite humbling.

This is only my fourth proper exhibition in the country. I guess my photography stands for pushing the limits and I’ve been blessed with the opportunities to shoot with some really amazing, top level athletes over the past five years - climbing, skiing, mountain biking and running.

Q: You’re known for your radical approach - shooting ‘anything climbing’ - what drives you?

A: There’s a quote from a book called Kiss or Kill [Confessions of a Serial Climber by Mark Twight] that goes: “The question is not how far I am going to take this. The question is, do I possess the constitution, the depth of faith to go as far as is needed?”

And for me that was always the case - I always wanted to push it. I didn’t want to ask myself is that as far as I can take it?

The photos show that - like an ice climber climbing a 4,000m serac or Dave McLeod on one of the most audacious sea cliffs in the world. That’s what my photography’s about.

Q: Are you going to be doing more work featuring the High Peak?

A: I have this personal project in mind called “This is Where I Live”. The Peak District is the place for world-class mountain biking and climbing and I’d really like to show it all. But I think with my busy assignment schedule it’ll be a long-term project, but I’d definitely like to shoot more locally, definitely.

• The three-day Sheffield Adventure Film Festival will be held at the Showroom Cinema and Workstation over the weekend of March 1-3.

Lucasz’s talk will take place on Sunday March 3 at 2.45pm. Tickets are £7.90 (£5.70 concessions) and can be purchased on 0114 275 7727.

For more details on Lucasz’s talk, visit www.shaff.co.uk/whats-on/speakers/lukasz-warzecha-lecture.